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What is Zero Hour in Parliament, Timing and Meaning of Zero Hour

Zero Hour is the time when Members of Parliament (MPs) can raise Issues of Urgent Public Importance. Although the parliamentary committee instituted Zero Hour in Parliament, the parliamentary rule book makes no mention of it. For raising matters during the Zero Hour, MPs must give the notice before 10 am to the Speaker/ Chairman on the day of the sitting. Through this process, members of parliament are able to bring up issues of general interest without having to provide any background information. The notice must state the subject they wish to raise in the House. However, the Speaker, Lok Sabha / Chairman, Rajya Sabha may allow or decline a Member to raise a matter of importance.

The Zero Hour in a Parliament is an important part of Indian Polity which an important subject in UPSC Syllabus 2024. Students can also go for UPSC Mock Test to get more accuracy in their preparations.

What is Zero Hour in Parliament ?

Zero Hour is a term used in some parliamentary systems, including in the Indian Parliament, to refer to a period of time in the proceedings of the House when Members of Parliament can raise matters of urgent public importance. During the Zero Hour, MPs can bring up issues that may have yet to be listed on the day’s agenda but require immediate attention. This allows MPs to draw the attention of the House and the government to pressing matters such as natural disasters, accidents, or other crises that require urgent action.

  • Zero Hour in a Parliament is the period of time during which Members of Parliament (MPs) discuss matters that are urgent and significant for the general public.
  • When bringing up issues during this time, members of Parliament should give notice to the Lok Sabha Speaker and the chairman of the Rajya Sabha by 10:00 a.m.
  • The member may raise a matter of public interest, but the Speaker of the Lok Sabha and the Chairman of the Rajya Sabha may approve or disapprove of this.
  • Zero Hour is an informal method that members can use to address urgent public matters without having to wait 10 days in advance because it is not mentioned in the parliamentary rules.
  • Zero hours, as used in parliamentary jargon, are crucial decision-making moments in Parliament.
  • It occurs between the question and the start of the usual business additionally, this hour starts at 12 noon.
  • As a result, it is known as “Zero Hour” in Parliament.
  • Neither the Constitution nor the Parliamentary Rule book mentions this idea.
  • Each member of the Parliament has three minutes to present problems during the Lok Sabha’s Zero Hour, which lasts for 30 minutes.
  • Since 1962, it has been an invention of India.

Read More:Pro-tem Speaker

Zero Hour Origin

In the early 1960s, following question time, a variety of urgent matters of public significance were brought up by members of parliament, sometimes with the chairman’s approval and other times without, leading to the creation of zero hours. It encouraged more members to use this quick and practical tool when the Zero Hour process began gaining media attention. When the chairman declares Question Hour, Zero Hour in Parliament begins, and MPs bring up the issues that they believe are of the utmost public significance to be brought to the Government through houses.

Also Read: Question Hour in Parliament

Zero Hour Maximum Duration

The Lok Sabha’s Zero Hour, which begins at precisely noon, immediately following the question period, has a 30-minute time limit. Members of Parliament utilize it to bring up urgent issues of general concern. Each member has three minutes to address an issue during this period, which is based on the length of Zero Hour in the Lok Sabha.

Also Read: No-Confidence Motion

Zero Hour Importance

When MPs grill the Minister about the government’s plans and policies during Zero Hour in Parliament, they are effectively holding the current administration accountable to the people. The majority of responses are written, which puts pressure on the government to operate transparently and effectively.

Also Read: Public Accounts Committee

Zero Hour UPSC

  • The crucial subject of Zero Hour in Parliament is included in the UPSC Polity Syllabus.
  • In order to prepare for the Prelims and Mains exams, candidates should be aware of how long Zero Hour lasts in the Indian Parliament.
  • Since the 1960s, the Zero Hour has served as a crucial parliamentary tool for holding the administration responsible for pressing societal issues.
  • Although zero hour frequently causes disruptions to the legislative session and sitting, it has repeatedly drawn attention to and held the government accountable on important problems.

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Zero Hour in Parliament FAQs

What is the zero hour time duration in Parliament?

The Zero Hour is an Indian Parliamentary innovation which starts at 12 Noon immediately after the Question Hour. The duration of the Zero Hour is 30 minutes.

What is meant by zero hour?

Zero Hour is the time when Members of Parliament (MPs) can raise Issues of Urgent Public Importance.

When was zero hour introduced in the Parliament?

Zero hour was introduced in the Indian parliamentary affairs in 1962. Zero hour refers to the time that immediately proceeds the Question Hour in both Houses of the Parliament.

What is Zero Hour in a parliament session?

Zero Hour in Parliament is an Indian innovation since 1962 which occurs after the completion of Question Hour and before the start of the business of the day. It allows MPs to raise matters of public important without giving the prior 10 days advance notice to the house of Parliament.

What is the time Limit of Zero Hour?

In Parliament, the Zero Hour begins at 12 noon, immediately after the question hour. It allows the Members of Parliament to talk about issues of public importance by informing the speaker before 10 AM on the same day.

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